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Old 27th January 2004, 02:50 PM   #1
Magura is offline Magura  Denmark
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Question Transformator volume control????

What is the theory behind using a transformer for volume control...and are there any benefits??

I stumbled on a statement that of that resistive volume controls are only for applications with lack of space??

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Old 27th January 2004, 02:54 PM   #2
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Theory? I don't know. Ususally these are transformers with many taps, and a switch steps to each tap to vary the level. Look at Sowter's website. I guess they have some advantage regarding noise. But AFAIK they are less wideband than a good resistive vol control.

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Old 27th January 2004, 05:42 PM   #3
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Quote:
But AFAIK they are less wideband than a good resistive vol control.
No argument here. They generally provide better drive than high impedance resistive controls and in particular enhance low volume listening.

I didn't like the S&B102 much at first - the limited HF extension really used to bug me - but now i'm stangely addicted. There is an intriguing and satisfying fullness to the sound which generally improves listenabilty.

As the 102 Mk2 i own turned out to be a 'beta' version , supposedly more stable but possibly inferior sounding to the original and with issues in balanced operation, i am now looking for a suitable upgrade. Maybe an autoformer?
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Old 27th January 2004, 06:57 PM   #4
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Some of my friends also are not that much excited about S&B TVC. Comparing to resistive volume controls, transformers don't offer razor etched detail and extended highs.

But there is something about their sound, that can become addictive indeed. There is certain smoothness and "organic" touch that even stepped volume attenuators don't provide. Also each time I switch to TVC, the soundstage becomes bigger.

I find them very good with passive I/V conversion DACs and of course, GainClones.

I had the early version, with 19 steps and silver plated wires, and now I'm using the latest one, with upgraded wires (no plating anymore) and 23 steps, but I can't say any one is better than the other.
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Old 27th January 2004, 07:12 PM   #5
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Autoformers - I'm using a pair wound by Dave Slagle (I think he posts here) that I'm very happy with. A few people have heard it, and have been pleasantly surprised. I haven't heard any S&B transformers though, so I don't know how they compare.
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Old 27th January 2004, 07:46 PM   #6
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I had the early version, with 19 steps and silver plated wires, and now I'm using the latest one, with upgraded wires (no plating anymore) and 23 steps, but I can't say any one is better than the other.
Peter

You seem to have a later 'beta' but not the original. Both versions seem to use bifiliar winding optimised for good paper response more than sonics. Seems like we owe this to the american marketing campaign. Plus they are no good balanced.




Saurav

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I haven't heard any S&B transformers though, so I don't know how they compare.
Ain't this frustrating? Dave Slagle certainly seems to know his stuff. And he doesn't seem at all concerned with pushing his product. Maybe i should simply bite the bullet and buy a pair.
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Old 27th January 2004, 07:58 PM   #7
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Dave Slagle certainly seems to know his stuff. And he doesn't seem at all concerned with pushing his product.
True. I wouldn't have come to know of these if I hadn't happened to be visiting a DIYer in my neighborhood who happened to have a pair on loan which he happened to ask me if I was interested in.

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Maybe i should simply bite the bullet and buy a pair.
I would recommend them highly. Like I said, I don't know how they compare to other TVC variations, but to me they're leagues ahead of any ~ $300 active preamp I've heard - tube or SS, commercial or DIY. Not that I've heard everything out there... and I guess that statement is true for the S&Bs too.

I would say, go for it. You might be the first one to actually compare teh two
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Old 27th January 2004, 08:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by analog_sa


Peter

You seem to have a later 'beta' but not the original. Both versions seem to use bifiliar winding optimised for good paper response more than sonics. Seems like we owe this to the american marketing campaign. Plus they are no good balanced.
The last one was send to me directly from England. How you get hold of the original?

Bent Audio claims that they use better wire for improved sonics.
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Old 27th January 2004, 08:54 PM   #9
Magura is offline Magura  Denmark
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Default And inside??

Does anyone know how such a thing looks inside?? Construction and so on?

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Magura
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Old 27th January 2004, 09:16 PM   #10
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How you get hold of the original?


http://www.diyhifisupply.com/accesso...nsformers.html


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Also original style with sandwich windings in stock. These are more suitable to use in an active application since they can handle higher voltages than the bifilar. Also, they subjectively sound better even though >50Khz doesn't measure as well.

It will be great if you decide to sample them. Besides, dealing with Brian is a pleasure. He also seems to speak 'canadian'
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